Continuing Education

Modern Masonry Using Pre-Blended Mortar

Approximately 1 hour

The use of mortar is a process that has changed little since the days of ancient Greece. Unlike lumber, steel, and other building materials found on today's construction sites, mortar ingredients are typically brought individually onto the site and stored where the masonry work is being done. Then they are shoveled into some form of mixer (manual or powered) to combine the dry ingredients along with a measured quantity of water. The results have been quite understandably dependent on the quality of the ingredients used, the skills of the people doing the portioning and mixing, and the outdoor environmental conditions' all variables that can and have produced quite variable outcomes in terms of mortar quality and performance. In our current time, there are some well-documented conditions that also come into play. Shortages of skilled construction labor means that it is uncertain how precisely the mortar is being mixed on-site. At the same time, manufacturers have made substantial strides in bringing modern production techniques to mortar by employing computerized technology that allows great precision in many factory settings. Therefore, rather than trusting the production process to hand mixing in unpredictable conditions, factory pre-blended mortar is becoming more and more the preferred norm for masonry construction of all types. Architects, engineers, contractors, and building owners are realizing that pre-blended mortar eliminates many of the variables and uncertainties of site-mixed mortar, thus reducing the potential for problems and liability with the finished masonry construction. In this course, we will look at the types of mortar available, the process and pitfalls of field mixing versus pre-blended mortar, and the significance of mortar in masonry assemblies.

Presented by various experts on behalf of Oldcastle APG.

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